go to top scroll for more


Projects: Projects for Investigator
Reference Number W/64/00657/00/00
Title Cost Reduction and Life Extension of Offshore Wind Farms (CORLEX)
Status Completed
Energy Categories Renewable Energy Sources(Wind Energy) 100%;
Research Types Basic and strategic applied research 10%;
Applied Research and Development 90%;
Science and Technology Fields PHYSICAL SCIENCES AND MATHEMATICS (Metallurgy and Materials) 20%;
ENGINEERING AND TECHNOLOGY (Mechanical, Aeronautical and Manufacturing Engineering) 40%;
UKERC Cross Cutting Characterisation Not Cross-cutting 100%
Principal Investigator Project Contact
No email address given
Award Type Standard
Funding Source DTI
Start Date 01 May 2005
End Date 01 May 2007
Duration 24 months
Total Grant Value £57,744
Industrial Sectors Power
Region London
Programme WIND
Investigators Principal Investigator Project Contact , Corus (99.995%)
  Other Investigator Project Contact , RWE npower plc (0.001%)
Project Contact , Atkins (0.001%)
Project Contact , Camcal (0.001%)
Project Contact , Sheffield Forgemasters Engineering Ltd (SFEL) (0.001%)
Project Contact , TWI Technology Centre (0.001%)
Web Site
Objectives CORLEX is a 2-year Dti-funded project funded under the Technology programme Renewable Energy . The project is looking into various aspects of offshore wind farm design, operation and maintenance and is coordinated by Corus RD T. Project partners include Atkins Process, TWI Ltd, Camcal Ltd, RWE Npower and Sheffield Forgemasters Engineering Ltd (SFEL), each bringing their own area of expertise to the project. ; ; ;A 30 reduction in costs is necessary for offshore wind to be economic. One area where savings could be made is to reduce the costs of the support structure (tower and foundation) by: (i) Cheaper/faster fabrication of towers foundations (utilising novel welding techniques); (ii) Extended structural lives through improved designs and fabrication methods; (iii) Light-weighting of turbines and supportings tr uc tures. The objective of CORLEX is therefore to help reduce the capital and operating costs of offshore wind farms. The project has thus been designedto address a number of issues via 5 main work packages: WP1 - Review of current designs The review of existing tower and foundation designs covers various wind tower designs, fabrication approaches, options for welding/casting and instion include multi-wire su bmerg ed ar c and reduced pressure electron beam welding. WP3 - Structural health monitoring (SHM) CORLEX aims to identify the benefits to be gained from the use of SHM in the offshore wind energy industry and if initial results prove positive, will help to provide a specification for a suitable system. Such SHM data systems may also be used to justify reduced levels of conservatism in design, which may provide opportunities for c ost re ductions in fabrication processes and material specifications. WP4 - Risk based life management (RBLM) It is hoped that CORLEX will identify the potential for gains to be achieved from RBLM (in conjunction with SHM) in offshore wind farms. The EU FP5 project RIMAP has provided a generic framework for the development of risk-based inspection and maintenance methodologies across a wide range of industr ies in the European regulatory context. The RBLM/SHM output from CORLEX could be used as the basis for the development of a RIMAP-based offshore wind energy industry workbook for RBLM. WP5 - Casting technology and design optimisation There is a need to develop the engineering design of cast nodes, which could be used on these steel sub-structures and moreparticularly, todefine the costs (via the p roductio n of a full-scale trial node) and to use this as a vehicle to introduce new cost saving ideas. The economics are a vital issue as presently wind turbine installations are struggling severely to meet the required economic criteria for wide scale development. A number of novel designs have been assessed by SFEL much of their effort is currently being concentrated on the production of the prototype cast transition node. It is hoped thatthe potentia l econo mic benefits are significant: the results from CORLEX helping to save the industry a substantial amount of money and increasing the competitiveness of the UK offshore wind energy sector. Total Project cost = 800,000 DTI grant = 57744
Publications Shuter, D.M. (2005). CORLEX - Cost Reduction and Life Extension of Offshore Wind Farms. Corus DTI, UK (PDF 1981 KB)
Final Report (none)
Added to Database 01/01/07